Radio Free Europe’s latest support for the Browder Hoax

By Lucy Komisar
Dec 29, 2017

Radio Free Europe Radio Liberty is the U.S. propaganda news service, so no surprise if it lies about William Browder and the Magnitsky case, but look here at the latest, “Hermitage Capital’s Browder Sentenced In Absentia By Moscow Court,” where it is easy to counter its claims with real facts.

RFE: Browder, who has led a global push for sanctions against Russian officials implicated in the death of imprisoned Russian whistle-blower Sergei Magnitsky, also was fined 200,000 rubles (about $3,500) and banned from conducting business activities in Russia for three years.

The Komisar Scoop: Magnitsky was not a whistle-blower. That would refer to Browder’s claim of Magnitsky’s alleged revelations in June 2008 of a December 2007 $250-million fraud against the Russian Treasury. But the Russian newspaper Kommersant had already written those facts in April. Magnitsky says in his own June testimony that on 3 April 2008, Kommersant published an article which, referring to the law-enforcement authorities, reported Browder’s three companies had allegedly used “tax evasion schemes» and that criminal proceedings were launched to prosecute those at fault. So, by his own words, he was not a whistleblower. Kommersant April 3, 2008  and April 4, 2008

RFE: Browder, who founded Hermitage Capital, was Russia’s largest portfolio investor until he fled the country in 2005.

The Komisar Scoop: He didn’t flee the country, he was denied a visa to reenter the country. Even Browder acknowledges that.

RFE: Russia’s government has applied pressure on Browder in an international campaign challenging the U.S. Magnitsky Act, a 2012 law that imposed visa bans and asset freezes on Russians alleged to be involved in the death of whistle-blowing accountant Magnitsky.

The Komisar Scoop: Again, there is no evidence of his whistle-blowing, he admitted Kommersant published the story first.

RFE: Magnitsky, who worked for Browder, accused Russian law enforcement and tax officials of a massive tax fraud scheme prior to his November 2009 death in a notorious Moscow jail.

The Komisar Scoop: That begs the question. Magnitsky had been questioned in 2006 about Hermitage tax evasion. It was the year before the $230 million scam that Browder uses to muddy the waters about his detention. And Magnitsky told a jail mate he was being pressed by his “employers” to say things he didn’t want to say. (See link to Oleg Lurie. Deposed in the Prevezon case)

In October 2009, a month before he died, Magnitsky gave testimony that said “I gained knowledge of the possible participation of police officers in this theft and that the stolen companies were subsequently used by the criminals to steal from the state budget the amount of 5.4 billion rubles, which had been earlier paid by the said companies in taxes at the time when they were controlled by my client”

He said “that all documents used as a legal basis for detaining me in custody were forged, and the case documents were fabricated by Tax Crime Department officers, who are the subordinates of Kuznetsov: Droganov, Krechetov, and Tolchinskiy. Obviously they forged the documents by the order of Kuznetsov.”

It was just a month before he died. It could not have been the reason for mistreatment that Browder and his acolytes claim lasted almost a year.

Magnitsky’s testimonies are linked on 100Reporters.

Regarding his last quote, under Russian law, the documents were not required to re-register companies.

Earlier the same year, Magnitsky acknowledged that original document were not required for legal filings. As he testified in June 5, 2008, the Hermitage companies ordered seal replicas from a commercial firm specializing in the manufacture of seals and stamps “using print specimens of the original seals on various documents and copies supplied by the representatives of the companies.” He noted that Internal Ministry officer Pavel Karpov, in charge of the tax investigation, was willing to return stamps and seals in November or December 2007, but that Ivan Cherkasov, Browder’s partner in Hermitage, requested that they not be retrieved unless criminal proceedings were instituted to investigate the re-registration of the companies and the sham lawsuits.

RFE: Magnitsky’s family and friends say he was tortured, beaten, and denied critical medical treatment shortly before he died.

The Komisar Scoop: Denied medical treatment, yes. The rest is invention. On the contrary, the Physicians for Human Rights, working with documents from Browder and the family, say Magnitsky died of untreated illness, not torture or beating. The Public Oversight Commission says the same. A Russian civil society group, its findings were provided to PHR by Browder.

RFE: In 2013, a Moscow court tried Browder in absentia and tried Magnitsky posthumously on tax evasion charges…..Magnitsky was found guilty of tax evasion posthumously.

The Komisar Scoop: Untrue. Magnitsky was not tried because Russians do not try deceased people, except if the goal is to rehabilitate them from the charges.

From Kommersant 07/12/2013: …. “William Browder was sentenced, the court did not rehabilitate Sergei Magnitsky…..

The criminal prosecution of Mr. Magnitsky, who died in jail in 2009, was terminated by the court, and his accomplice was given a nine-year sentence….

The presiding judge Igor Alisov ruled: the criminal prosecution against Sergei Magnitsky will be terminated in connection with his death, but not on rehabilitating the accused circumstances….

Prosecutor Mikhail Reznichenko said, “the disagreement of the family of Sergei Magnitsky to stop the criminal prosecution on non-rehabilitating grounds was a reason for the resumption of the investigation and subsequent trial.”

Kommersant №121 July 12, 2013, page 4.

That means that whoever claims Magnitsky was tried posthumously and found guilty is lying. Not the first time RFERL has lied about the case, which has become part of the official U.S. government’s coldwar 2.0 demonization of Russia, convenient for Browder who is using it to block Russia from going after multi-million dollars of evaded taxes.

The Komisar Scoop will keep a running account of RFERL falsifications. Or, giving it the benefit of the doubt, its bad journalism.

Look at this Russian legal decision only if you need definitive proof that Magnitsky was not found guilty of anything, in spite of the fake claims by Browder and friends. It’s heavy lawyer’s language. I will post original Russian version.

APPROVED

City of Moscow on May 22, 2014

Tverskoy District Court of Moscow, consisting of the chairman- Judge Neveroeva TV, under the secretary Potapkina ES, with the participation of: the prosecutor from the second department for the supervision of the investigation of criminal cases in the Investigation Committee of the Russian Federation of the Office for the Supervision of Investigation of especially important cases of the Prosecutor General’s Office of the Russian Federation Tyukavkin SA, lawyer Gorokhov NA, having examined in an open court session a complaint submitted in accordance of art. 125 of the Code of Criminal Procedure of the Russian Federation by Magnitskay N.N. for the action of the senior investigator for particularly important cases of investigation of organized criminal activity in the sphere of economy of the Investigative Committee of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Russia Urzhumtseva OV, expressed in a rendering on December 28, 2010 a  decree on refusal to initiate Criminal case proceedings against Magnitsky S.L. on the basis, Stipulated by item 4 of part 1 of Art. 24 of the Code of Criminal Procedure,

Established:

December 28, 2010 by senior investigator for particularly important cases of the Office for the Investigation of Organized Crime in the sphere of economics of the Investigative Committee under the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Russia Urzhumtsev OV in the criminal case No. 152979, a decision was rendered to deny the initation of criminal proceedings against Magnitsky S.L. On the basis, stipulated by item 4 of part 1 of Art. 24 of the Code of Criminal Procedure.

Applicant Magnitskaya NN, who is the mother of Magnitsky SL, appealed to the court with a complaint under Art. 125 of the CCP RF, requesting to deem as illegal and unfounded the actions of the senior investigator for especially important cases of management to investigate organized criminal activity in the sphere of economics of the Investigative Committee under the Ministry of Internal Affairs Russia Urzhumtseva OV. The actions of Urzhumtseva were expressed in the pronouncement on December 28, 2010 decision on refusal to initiate criminal proceedings against Magnitsky S.L. on the basis provided for by Clause 4 Part 1 of Art. 24 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, pointing out that those set forth in the descriptive-motivational part of the given decisions of the action, falling under the signs of the corpus delicti, stipulated by Part 4 of Art. 159 of the Criminal Code, that Magnitsky S.L. was not accused or suspected by the court of committing those criminal actions.

Established:

 Decision on refusal to initiate criminal proceedings against Magnitsky S.L. on the basis provided for by Clause 4 Part 1 of Art. 24 of the Code of Criminal Procedure,

Pointing out that those set forth in the descriptive-motivational part of the given decisions of the action, falling under the signs of the corpus delicti, stipulated by Part 4 of Art. 159 of the Criminal Code, Magnitsky S.L. Did not commit; by To this criminal case Magnitsky S.L. Suspect or accused Did not admit.

In the court session, the applicant’s representative is the lawyer NA Gorokhov. Asked the complaint to be granted according to the arguments set out in the complaint text.

The prosecutor asked to refuse the complaint, since acceptance of this decision by the investigator did not violate the Criminal procedure law norms.

After hearing the participants in the process, having studied the arguments of the complaint, submitted for judicial review of materials, the court comes to the next.

According to Part 1 of Art. 125 of the Criminal Procedure Code of the decision of the investigator, investigator, The head of the investigative body on the refusal to initiate criminal proceedings, on termination of the criminal case, as well as other decisions and actions (inaction) Investigator, head of the investigative body and the prosecutor, which can damage the constitutional rights and freedoms of participants of criminal proceedings or impede the access of citizens can be appealed to the district court at the place of preliminary investigation.

Based on the results of the examination of the crime report, the inquiry body, Investigator, head of the investigative body takes in the decision to refuse to open a criminal case (Article 145 of the Code of Criminal Procedure).

In the absence of grounds for instituting criminal proceedings, the head Investigative body, investigator, inquiry body or investigator makes the decision to refuse to open a criminal case (Part 1, Article 148 of the Code of Criminal Procedure).

In accordance with paragraph 4 of part 1 of Art. 24 CCP RF criminal case cannot be Instituted, and an initiated criminal case is subject to termination, Following reason: death of the suspect or accused, for except in cases where criminal proceedings are necessary for rehabilitation of the deceased.

 As follows from the case materials, investigator Urzhumtsev O.V. Guided by these provisions of the criminal procedure law, refused to initiate criminal proceedings against Magnitsky SL, deceased on November 16, 2009, as this circumstance excluded the opportunity to initiate an investigation in a criminal case.

Despite the arguments of the complaint, the decision to refuse the initiation of a criminal case does not indicate criminal prosecution Magnitsky SL, which, in the sense of the criminal procedure law is carried out by the prosecution in order to expose the suspect, accused of committing a crime, and is associated with holding the initiation of a criminal case of a complex of investigative actions for the collection, verification and evaluation of evidence of a person’s guilt in committing a crime, therefore, does not establish the guilt of SL Magnitsky. In the commission of an act containing the elements of a crime.

If the refusal to open a criminal case against Magnitsky SL, the investigator follows the procedure for issuing this decision, which is accepted appropriate official, within the limits of his authority, if available The grounds provided for by law and in compliance with the requirements of the criminal-procedural law.

Contrary to the arguments of the complaint, about this decision, December 28, 2010. Investigator to the wife of Magnitsky S.L. – Zharikova NV It was appropriate notice, with the counsel. Arguments about the non-receipt of the message by the addressee, do not refute Information available in the case.

On the basis of the above, the court, considering that in the arguments of the applicant were found, in connection with which, the complaint does not satisfy.

The court does not see grounds for the adoption of a private decision in respect of Officials of the investigative body.

Guided by art. 123, 125 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, the court

Decided:

The complaint of Magnitskaya N.N. On the actions of a senior investigator for Important cases of management to investigate organized crime

Activities in the field of economics of the Investigative Committee under the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Russia Urzhumtseva OV, expressed in the pronouncement on December 28, 2010. Of the Refusal to open a criminal case against Magnitsky S.L.  The grounds provided for by cl. 4 p. 24 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, – are without satisfaction.

The decision may be appealed to the Moscow City Court, through Tverskoy District Court of Moscow, within 10 days from the date of removal.

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